Portland Trail Blazer victories can rarely be described as “boring”, but Friday night’s win in Orlando may be the exception. After falling behind in the first half, Orlando never seemed to have the horsepower to overcome the deficit, making multiple unsustained mini-runs in the second half. Eventually, time ran out, and Portland finished the Florida two-step with their second straight win. Damian Lillard (with 21 points) and CJ McCollum (20) led the team in scoring. Here are a few essentials from tonight’s game.
- The Nurk is back. Portland cleared Jusuf Nurkic, allowing him to start the game but play limited minutes. He looked like the old Nurk, effective at both ends.
- Farouq is still hot. Al-Farouq Aminu continues to stay near the top of the NBA’s shooting charts, picking his spots and hitting his open three-pointers. Even when he missed, he was still unstoppable.
- Orlando just isn’t very good. Despite a 6-2 start to the season, the Magic have quickly fallen out of contention in the Eastern Conference. Injuries haven’t helped, as Evan Fournier still missed tonight’s game. But even healthy, it’s hard to imagine this team recovering from its 11-19 record to be relevant in the East this season, beyond a quick playoff exit.
No rest for the Blazers! They play the Hornets tomorrow in Charlotte. The game tips off at 4:00 pm. Stay tuned for more coverage of tonight’s game.